Bhopal: With the formation of a cabinet in Madhya Pradesh still pending, Congress leaders Vivek Tankha and Kapil Sibal on Monday wrote to President Ram Nath Kovind seeking his intervention in the matter and, if necessary, imposition of President’s rule in the state. Tankha on April 11, in another letter to Kovind, had made the same demand.
Shivraj Singh Chouhan, who was sworn in as chief minister on March 23, on Monday completed 28 days in power without a council of ministers, the longest duration any chief minister has served in the country without a cabinet.
Congress has been highly critical of the Shivraj government for not forming cabinet despite the state being in grip of covid19 outbreak.
Both Tankha and Sibal in the missives sent to President of India complained of ‘unconstitutional functioning of the MP government’ saying ‘it’s not a government but a one –man show’.
“Indore today is the epicentre of the spread of the virus hosting 80% of COVID-19 infection. Bhopal earlier witnessed the collapse of the Health Department with the hierarchy of its officers infected and in the absence of a health minister, the infected officers continued to discharge their duties,” said the letter.
The two senior lawyers also referred to Article 163 of the constitution, which mandates the council of ministers and advice of Governor for the state government and Article 164A requiring the council of ministers should not be less than 12.
The leaders said that when Chouhan was sworn in, there was no legal impediment hindering the formation of the cabinet.
The two lawyers urged Kovind to either instruct the state to constitute a Council of Ministers, or consider and pass a vote on account by following settled constitutional procedures and to withdraw unconstitutional ordinances (MP Finance Ordinance, 2020 and MP Appropriation (Vote on Account) Ordinance, 2020.
Union minister Narendra Singh Tomar earlier on Monday said the cabinet would soon be formed in the state.
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